It’s expected that Apple will reboot the publishing industry today with the release of a tablet computer. It’s likely a better Kindle in form and function that also runs web applications. Expect a one more thing announcement regarding software and I suspect that’ll include proxmity (geocoded photos and videos). More on that below.
The context to the unrelenting hype about a tablet (Mac fans have wanted another one since the Newton) is the Apple Store and buying and/or subscribing to magazines, blogs, and papers. Where this potentially matters to those of us with bikes is more mobility and I hope another generation of related apps. Whether in your jersey pocket or mounted on your bike, the iPhone is more ubiquitous than ever in our sport and rides.
While I doubt it’s usefulness as a bike computer, I do see the iPhone as a dashboard. For those of us that are connected online – arguably overconnected – we can ride and check in with the office and riding buddies. We’ve been discussing “urban mobility” for years at Intel events, SXSW, Webvisions, and our Mobile Socials. There’s a mobile connectivity thread in our community that’s also driven by the fact us bike geeks are also gadget geeks. In the next month, we’ll have the Reecharge on test to charge our iPhone while we’re riding around. Presumably we could pull a tablet out of messenger bag too and plug it in to the Reecharge battery at a coffee shop while we read a tablet version of Road Bike Action.
The iPod lead to the iPhone and then to follow-on touch-screen devices from Google. We hope the innovation from Apple leads to related innovation from bike computers and related fitness apps. What we’re thinking is we’re out on a ride with a small dongle capturing data. Finish the ride, sync to a tablet or phone, and upload the data to a mashed up Latitude-type community. Want to compare your old-fat-guy time on the climb to your skinny-climbing bro? Click a button to overlay your friend’s ride. For bloggers, we could cross-reference that ride to all photos and videos we shot.
After 10:00 AM PDT today, we’ll know more.
How about you readers? Do you want a tablet from Apple or content with being retro in Tweed?